German-Algerian hydrogen partnership: VNG to collaborate with Algerian energy company Sonatrach on green hydrogen
To this end, both companies today signed a memorandum of understanding at the fourth German-Algerian Energy Day in Algiers (Algeria). The aim is to jointly examine possibilities for the realisation of long-term hydrogen and ammonia projects with a view to importing green hydrogen from Algeria to Germany in the future.
“Hydrogen is set to be a key component of our energy future. Large amounts will have to be imported, however, to satisfy the demand for hydrogen in Germany. Green hydrogen from Algeria could play an important role here as the potential in this respect is huge. So I’m delighted that today we have laid an important foundation with Sonatrach for ramping up the German-Algerian hydrogen industry,” explains Hans-Joachim Polk, member of the VNG Executive Board.
“Sonatrach is part of Algeria’s national hydrogen roadmap, which aims to kick off pilot projects by 2030. The international infrastructure connection between Algeria and Europe that can be used for transporting green hydrogen and the availability of solar energy potential enables us to pursue a long-term strategy for realising green hydrogen projects at competitive cost. Today we are signing a memorandum of understanding with a recognised strategic partner in the emerging hydrogen sector to examine long-term collaboration on joint commercial hydrogen projects,” says Fethi Arabi, member of the Sonatrach Executive Board.
Initially, VNG and Sonatrach intend to work together on associated financial/technical issues, for example concerning the hydrogen infrastructure and the potential for joint commercial hydrogen projects. “Sonatrach and VNG share considerable ambition when it comes to establishing the hydrogen economy. Our collaboration will help us to learn together and to work on realising a supply partnership in the long term. Our well-developed gas infrastructure will also play an important future role in the hydrogen ramp-up,” says Polk. Through its independent subsidiary ONTRAS Gastransport GmbH (ONTRAS) and storage subsidiary VNG Gasspeicher GmbH (VGS), VNG has important assets for expanding the hydrogen infrastructure in eastern Germany.
VNG is a group of over 20 companies with more than 1,500 employees. Headquartered in Leipzig, the Group serves to ensure the secure supply of gas in Germany as the country’s third-largest gas importer and storage operator and also, via ONTRAS Gastransport GmbH, the operator of a 7,700 km network of long-distance gas pipelines. VNG supplies gas to approximately 400 municipal utilities, meeting some 20% of German gas requirements.In addition, with its VNG 2030+ strategy, VNG is pursuing an ambitious path for its commitment to renewable and decarbonised gases. VNG is already one of the leading biogas producers in Germany and is actively involved in numerous projects to build a carbon-neutral hydrogen industry. Based on its core competencies in gas and critical infrastructure, VNG works along the entire gas value chain to create a sustainable, secure and ultimately climate-neutral energy system. More about VNG at www.vng.de.
Signing of the Memorandum of Understanding in Algiers. front row (l.t.r.): Hans-Joachim Polk (CTO, VNG) and Fethi Arabi (Bord Member, Sonatrach). back row (l.t.r.): Elisabeth Wolbers (German ambassador), Dr. Franziska Brantner (Parl. State Secretary in the BMWK), Samia Moualfi (Minister of Environment and Renewable Energies, Algeria) and Mohamed Arkab (Minister of Energy and Mines, Algeria). Foto © Meziane Djaout